Charlene Wango Writer/Director + creator of ‘Fields’

Charlene Wango – creator of Fields

Please introduce yourself …

I am a Writer and Director, born and raised in South London. I officially began my career as a Director’s Assistant on Rapman’s film Blue Story (2019) (Paramount Pictures). I would describe the work that I do as real, raw and relatable. I love writing and directing stories that are extremely nuanced with elements of a life that I and so many others know. A lot of the stories I desire to tell haven’t been seen on the silver screen before, so it’s important for me to fill that space, to give the voiceless a voice. Everyone has a story, everyone matters and everyone deserves to be seen and remembered throughout history. Film is my way of making history.

Why Fields?

It was quite bizarre how the story even came about. End of 2018, I was at a point in life where I didn’t know what I was doing in regards to my career in film. I had met Koby one evening and he actually told me to do a film about my church. I wasn’t keen on it at all, however the very next day my Pastor Mimi calls me at the crack of dawn stating that the Holy Spirit told her I’m going to write a film about the church and this is the film that will make me ‘blow’. After that, it was a no brainer and I decided to tell Pastor’s story through her lens.

Tell us about your team …

The key people who were initially involved were Koby Adom, Tony Longe and Karl Lokko. These three people were absolutely key in pre production and in helping to raise funds for the film. They were dedicated to the cause and treated Fields as their own which was special. Adjani Salmon was key in my script development process so I must thank him for going through all 27 drafts with me. Also I have Domenique and Danielle at DBK to thank. They came on board for post production and I’m so grateful for how they gracefully got me to the finish line, no matter how challenging things became. Lastly I must thank Taylor McWilliams, I couldn’t have made this film without him.

What’s does the story of Fields mean personally to you?

Personally, Fields is a short yet impactful depiction of Pastor’s life and how she impacted the youth in her area and beyond. This story is important and empowering to me as it’s a unique example of what faith, love and hope looks like. There’s something extremely pure about selflessness and Pastor’s story inspires me to be just that, in my own way. I love that Fields also touches on the importance of doing good, no matter the circumstances… that extending yourself to help someone you think is in need will come back to you in its own way.

Tell us a memorable moment from idea to final edit?

A memorable moment for me was when Fields was set to become a documentary instead of a film. For some reason it was difficult to have a cut which served the story and provided context without it being too confusing. But there was one day that I met with my editor and for the first time I was in flow and we managed to come up with a cut that blew everyone away. Sometimes you genuinely do know what you want but it’s part of the process, discarding everything you don’t want for the final edit.

Share a skill-defining moment making this film?

A skill defining moment for me was working with my cast. Just communicating and creating an environment where my cast can feel safe and comfortable was very key for me. We faced many obstacles on set which in some events did shift the atmosphere but being able to get everyone back on course and to have the freedom of ‘play’ was important to me and something that I feel I had done well.

What’s next?

Everything. As in, everything creatively that I desire to get my hands on I’m going for it, especially in cinema and Television. I didn’t know that Fields was actually going happen until it happened so all I can really say is keep your eyes peeled because I’m only just getting started.

Fields is showing as part of DBK’s Unearthed Narrative series. Available to watch now via Now TV

Find out more about DBK’s Unearthed Narrative filmmakers here


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